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pchelpware - remote support tool Let’s see here… WHAT!?!?!? $700 just for remote support software?! Ever feel like that? You need to give remote support but don’t want to shell out 700 to a couple thousand bucks, luckily, you don’t have to.

With PcHelpWare from uVNC, you get a portable, free, customizable, professional remote support program. But do you get what you pay for or is this one of the best things in life that are free?

The admin interface is just a bit more “techie” than some of the other remote support programs out there, but offers the same functionality. To create a server (that’s what client needs to download before you can offer him remote support) fill out the relevant information, and click on “Create Server”.

remote support software

That will run a batch file that generators a small .exe file that who ever needs help can run. Then simply click on “Start” and wait for the user to run the program and click connect. As for the user, the interface couldn’t be simpler.

Here is a detailed list of instructions for the user after they have downloaded the program and run it:

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1. Click “Connect”.
2. The End.

Yeah, that’s it. You can also require the user to enter the login and password.

So you’ve sent the file to the user, they’ve downloaded it and clicked connect. Now you have control of their computer, but what can you do?

In short, everything.

The image quality is spectacular, it feels like your actually sitting in front of the user’s computer. It is also lightning fast, the image coming across is almost real time. Need to get a file from point A to point B, with PcHelpware you can transfer files copy paste style, copy the file, click sync clipboard, paste.

You can also chat with the user if you need, go full-screen, and if necessary, lock server input (lock the keyboard and mouse at the user’s computer.)

For all of you security freaks, PcHelpware connects with two different encryption protocols, so everything you do is secure.

remote support free

Yeah that’s great, but what about that customization you told me about! I’ll say this much, PcHelpware is the most customizable remote support software I’ve seen, but also the least user friendly to customize.

If all you do is edit the default “background.bmp” it is fairly easy, however, you can completely customize where the Login and Password fields are (or remove them completely), the size and shape, and just about anything you can think of. Unfortunately, there really isn’t a graphical way to do this, however uVNC does have a great section on how to customize the server here.

All and all PcHelpware is an absolutely great remote support app. It is 100% free and customizable. It includes many of the features of commercial products: repeaters, works behind firewalls, customization, etc. My one complaint if any is the slightly more complicated back end, but the front end is impossible to beat. Despite a few short comings, PcHelpware more than makes up for them with its price, customization, and speed.

  1. Nick
    September 11, 2009 at 1:54 pm

    PCHelpware is great, but it's a shame that the pchw/uvnc team are so unstructured and messy. I've been using this for a few years, so I know that the patch is at least two years old. Yet, they still haven't applied their own patch to the package you download! You first have do download the main file, then the patch and then you have to go through the directory tree so that you plave the patch files in the right place. They haven't even bothered to include instructions for this in the patch package.

    Having said that, the software does it's job well. Too bad it's no longer updated.

  2. SEM
    September 10, 2009 at 5:29 pm

    nice piece of free software, thanks for posting! I don't really mind that VNC needs an IP- crossloop never worked for me for some reason.

  3. Bill
    February 10, 2009 at 5:05 pm

    mchlbk, I believe http://www.ntrglobal.com has remote support for linux:

    ntrglobal.com/ntrsupport/en/NTRsupport-for-Linux.asp

    there's a 15 day free trial.

  4. mchlbk
    November 23, 2008 at 4:25 pm

    Similar programs for linux?

  5. Andrew Donnelly
    October 2, 2008 at 9:05 am

    For easy to use remote support, you can use Mikogo - the free online meeting tool with built-in remote support capability.
    No configurations, network/firewall changes, or IP address needed. Just start a session, and those joining only have to enter the unique ID. Completely free and secure (256 bit AES encryption). If you need more than a remote support tool, Mikogo allows you to invite 10 people to a screen sharing session, which makes it ideal for free online meetings, Web presentations, webinars and group collaboration. More info on the MakeUseOf review

    Cheers,
    Andrew
    The Mikogo Team

  6. Marco
    October 2, 2008 at 8:23 am

    So what about the IP address? I remember the VNC apps need to know the IP. If so, it doesn’t make sense. How can I explain a customer how to check it’s IP, etc. I’ve been using CrossLoop for ages. No IP address needed - just the tiny code.

  7. Leonard
    October 2, 2008 at 9:26 am

    My vote is Techinline techinline.com It's perfect for a small helpdesk such as mine with our limited budget, since it is priced at a fraction of LogMeIn, GoToAssist, or Webex. In terms of the process of connecting, it's probably the easiest since neither you, nor the remote clients have to install absolutely anything (browser-based service). I used to be with LogMeIn Rescue, and that service obviously had more features, however, this is more than enough functionality for me

  8. Taufiq
    October 2, 2008 at 12:26 am

    havent tried this one either but i use teamviewer and i think its really simple.

  9. pop
    October 1, 2008 at 8:14 am

    I just came across this one: FreeRemoteSupport.com.

    LOVE IT! My mom (who's not so quick with the computer or the "Intraweb" ;) can use it no problem.

  10. hongleong
    October 1, 2008 at 2:14 am

    IMHO, the one feature that this tool beats many of the other free/commercial software out there is that it can run on a limited user account in Windows. There is no need to run the client software in an Administrator account. This is so important, especially for supporting corporate end-users who may be overseas and using a restricted user account but need remote support from IT Dept back in HQ.

    Highly recommended. :)

  11. Aibek
    September 30, 2008 at 6:56 pm

    Nice app... So far looks pretty good, the speed seems on the good side as well. Will comment more tomorrow.

  12. catester
    September 30, 2008 at 8:40 pm

    Haven't tried this one, but I do recommend CrossLoop (crossloop.com/) highly. Easy to use, no backdoor, does not litter your computer with crap even after you uninstall it like LogMeIn, and extremely not scary for newbie customers/family/friends. And, you know, free.

  13. Ted Murphy
    September 30, 2008 at 3:36 pm

    Thank you so much for this article. I digg'ed it (my first digg ever - bit of a pain, too). Anyway, I was looking for something like this last week, and I appreciate the post.

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